Wednesday, March 30, 2005
* Best Schiavo Piece

I know I've been quiet lately. I've been very busy and also have not had much to say. A deadly combination for my readers, I know.

In any event, I have been closely following the Schiavo story. I'm most interested in the legal ins and outs, but there's something in this story for everyone.

This St. Petersburg Times article is the best op-ed piece I've seen on the subject.
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
* Schiavo: Why No Lethal Injection?

I don't understand the argument that the right to lifers use to pull on our heartstrings about how it is cruel and unusual that Schiavo is being allowed to die of thirst and starvation. Doesn't this push in the other direction and make euthanasia a better idea, not a worse idea? Isn't it obvious that she should have been given a lethal injection instead and allowed to die quickly and painlessly? But, if the law forbids that (which is undoubtedly the fault of the right to lifers), then this is the only other choice, no?
Thursday, March 10, 2005
Cross-posted from a diary on Kos. Regular readers of my blog might note that my style is a bit different when I'm writing for Kos ...

In the past two days, tunesmith has led a charge to unite right and left blogistan against the bankruptcy bill. See here and here. This movement has been picked up by the right, including various well-known right-of-center bloggers (see the diary and Politology for more info). And the media is now taking notice as well.

Moreover, as tunesmith noted in comments in his or her second diary, "We can talk about left vs right until we're blue (or red) in the face, but there are plenty of matters where it's simply the politicians versus the public, and the blogosphere is on the side of the public."

This is so true. Ever since the election, I have been thinking about how polarized we are and how politicians take advantage of this to press their own interests. I've been wondering whether there might be fundamental bedrock principles that everyone, lefty and righty, can agree on. Surely there are many. If we can find and establish these bedrock principles, then we can perhaps do a better job of advancing the interests of the public as opposed to the interests of elites and politicians.

I suggest that we [as in the DailyKos community] put together a document that expresses such values, and we ask our counterparts on the right to vet the document. If there's anything in there that they don't agree with, we take it out, no questions asked. If they want to add anything, they can, so long as we agree with it as well.

In the end, we should have a (perhaps short) political document that we could use to judge legislation and policy. Since we'll have to stay so basic to keep agreement across party lines, it would be clear that anything that conflicted with this bipartisan document would likely be very bad, and could be judged accordingly. This would provide bloggers and citizens with ammunition to take to the media that could help to shoot down policies (like the bankruptcy bill) that favor interest groups against the greater public good.

I'd like this to be a collaborative effort, but here's my start at getting us going. I will try to alternate between topics that the left might advance and the right might advance to keep the document as balanced as possible.I have invited the community at DailyKos to comment on this list and to add their own non-divisive statements. Link. If this takes off, I would plan to coordinate a final document and take this over to the right side of blogistan for their input. I'm also looking for suggestions for what we could call this document.
Monday, March 07, 2005
** Iraq: What Checkpoints are Really Like

You must read this Seattle Times article about what checkpoints in Iraq are like from the perspective of Iraqis. It's a total clusterfuck. Just to take one example, there are often two parts to the checkpoint. In the first part, Iraqi soldiers wave the cars through, and so naturally the drivers speed up after getting through. But up ahead, there's a second group of American soldiers, and if they see someone speeding towards them they shoot first and ask questions later.

via SteveGilliard
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